The gadget site “The Mobile Indian” interviewed Sanmeet Singh Kochhar, Vice President – India & MENA (Middle East and North Africa), HMD Global. We summarised the most important bits of the interview, so let us see what Sanmeet Singh Kocchar has to say about the new strategy of Nokia Mobile.
Nokia 5310 and its target audience
He said that they are targeting two types of audience groups. The first group includes the ones who want to go through a digital detox, who wants it as a companion device. The second group includes those who use a feature phone as their main device.
HMD Global also did a study recently with CMR, in which they found that the section of people who want better audio and music qualities apart from a quality feature phone has increased. So for them, the Nokia 5310 can be an ideal feature phone.
Absence of 4G in Nokia 5310
Here, he highlighted that as per an IDC report, India recorded 130 million feature phone shipments in 2019, of which a big chunk belongs to 2G feature phones. That’s why they expect the users to carry their audio content in their phones or to use the wireless FM, so that they do not need 4G to use this device.
Battery size in Nokia smartphones
The interviewer says that the consumers want bigger batteries than 4000 mAh battery in their Nokia smartphones. However, Sanmeet said that the runtime of a battery depends on how well the phone is optimized with the processor, screen, and other functionalities. He says they introduced the “2-day battery life” with phones like Nokia 7.2 and Nokia 2.3.
Interestingly, the interviewer asked that with bigger batteries they can increase the runtime from 2 to 3 days. However, Sanmeet stressed on the point that the 2-day battery life is good enough. Rather some consumers want a better display (PureDisplay) or a device replacement guarantee. And, HMD Global is happy to take the feedback of the consumers on board.
Pricing of Nokia devices
He said that the price needs to be compared with the value of the phone. The market is heavily commoditized but Nokia Mobile has a strong differentiator in the form of its craftsmanship and build quality, which cannot be compared with the other brands.
He also presented an example saying that a mid-range or a lower-end device from Nokia receives 2 years of Android updates, but the other branded devices do not get the OS upgrades for that long.
Absence of Nokia’s UI or OS
Nokia Mobile wants to give its consumers the freedom to choose the applications that they want in their phones. As per him, Nokia Mobile does not want to fill the devices with unwanted apps or bloatware, unlike the other branded devices. Because, then the consumer does not have any chance to remove them on their own.
Being a part of Android One family
Because of the Android One’s presence, Nokia Mobile can give the promised 2 years of Android upgrades and 3 years of monthly security updates. And, HMD Global is very active in the Android Enterprise program, in which the businesses ask for a secured device.
Manufacturing Expansion in India
Excluding Nokia 9 PureView and Nokia 8 Sirocco, all the phones that sell in India are manufactured in India. HMD Global is also looking to export Nokia devices from India as recently the Government of India has put in certain incentives.
Currently, HMD Global has manufacturing factories in Argentina, China, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam. He believes that with a proper ecosystem development, India can become a major manufacturing hub in the world. For HMD Global, India is a very important market in terms of sales, consumers, and manufacturing.
Future launches in India
Nokia Mobile plans to launch the Nokia 5.3 in India soon, with a better proposition based on price vs value. They plan to launch the other devices at the right time.
Is Nokia Mobile ready to take on other brands?
The interviewer says that in the last few days the mindset of the Indian consumers seems to shift from Chinese brands to the non-Chinese ones. Sanmeet said that Nokia Mobile is proud of its European roots, the Finnish roots and are ready to take on any brand, irrespective of the country the brand belongs to.
Nokia Mobile plans to bring a better proposition in terms of price vs. value with the upcoming launches.
If you remember, we saw Ajey Mehta, the Global Vice President, HMD Global, (former Head, HMD Global India) appearing for the interview last year when the Nokia 7.2 was launched in India. At that time, he did answer the questions, but cautiously, by not talking much about the competitors.
However, in this interview, Sanmeet seemed to answer the questions quite freely, and even about the competitors.
We would like to see HMD Global improve the initial availability of the devices. It would be great if HMD Global decides to bring the devices in all the announced color options, and not only in a single color. More aggressiveness in terms of pricing, and some changes in the UI would also be appreciated.
What changes would you like Nokia Mobile to bring in? Feel free to share your views in the comments section below.
We suggest you to watch the video even if you do not understand the language (Hindi), because the video shows the evolution of Nokia devices right from [4:27] 1990 to 2019.